transmission of the hepatitis C virus is possible, but much less likely than with hepatitis B.
may occur where blood-to-blood contact takes place, for example during anal sex
or sex during menstruation. The risk is increased in these situations, and
condom use is particularly recommended for prevention if there are any wounds
in the genital area or other concomitant infections (e.g. herpes or HIV).
Condoms are also recommended if there is a frequent change of sexual partners.
transmission of HCV between men and women appears rare, even in long-term
transmission of HCV between men has become more frequent in Europe in recent
years, particularly between men who have HIV. Sexual practices that carry a
risk of bleeding, such as fisting or rough anal intercourse, are strongly
associated with hepatitis C infection. HCV may also be present in semen and
rectal fluid and so may be passed on during anal sex even if bleeding does not
of HCV being transmitted to the foetus or newborn baby from a mother who has
HCV, before or during delivery, is estimated to be around 1 to 6%. 1 The risk of transmission is not
reduced by a caesarean section. Transmission of the virus is more frequent for
expectant mothers who have both hepatitis C and HIV.
generally do not advise against breastfeeding, as hepatitis C transmission
through breast milk is considered highly unlikely. As a precautionary measure,
however, they advise against it if nipples are inflamed or bleeding. Women who
also have HIV are recommended not to breastfeed to avoid passing HIV on to